Day 24: Generations together at Arsenal

Saturday 24 June:

All Change and Arsenal in the Community come together for a day of intergenerational celebrations and creativity with two special events. (Please note both events are fully booked this year. Apologies for any disappointment)

 Granddads, Dads and Lads will see male family members enjoy a poetry workshop and stadium tour from 10.30am with poet Paul Lyalls and Samir Singh from Arsenal in the Community.

From 2pm – over local people of all ages will come together at Emirates Stadium for Home Ground –  a not so hidden history of Arsenal and Islington behind the scenes, featuring a performance of spoken word and short films from All Change’s Saturday Socials writers group‘When Saturday Comes’ working with poet Francesca Beard and photography artist Leticia Valverdes – plus dancing, pop-up creative workshops, a chance to take a special tour of the stadium and an opportunity to record your own Islington story. The event will also see the premiere exhibition of ‘Arsenal Is’ a photo poem created by older men at The Mildmays extra care centre working with poet Simon Mole and photography artist Sarah Ainslie – plus performances from Thornhill Primary School pupils and Paul Lyalls.

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Day 23: Words and Pictures

Friday 23 June:

As Word2017 reaches the end of it’s 4th week there is still time to catch some beautiful and inspiring exhibitions at House of Illustration and Islington Museum.

At House of Illustration enjoy The Life of Birds – this exhibition brings together Quentin Blake’s expressive drawings for his book ‘The Life of Birds’ with several new illustrations produced specially for the occasion. Anime Architecture: Backgrounds of Japan  An exhibition of hand-painted backgrounds from sci-fi anime films including ‘Ghost in the Shell’. Inspired by Asia’s emerging megacities, Production I.G designed fictional worlds that reflected the real story of ruthless urban development. Never seen in the UK before, their exquisite film backgrounds are a combination of painterly skill and exacting mechanical logic. Jacqueline Ayer: Drawing on Thailand – Jacqueline Ayer’s picture books were a remarkable addition to children’s literature in 1960s America and the UK. Documenting the back lanes of Bangkok, they brought a bold vision of Asian life to the western market at a time when diverse cultures were not authentically portrayed. Two of her five ground-breaking picture books will be reissued for the first time since 1959 by US publisher Enchanted Lion Books, to coincide with the exhibition: ‘Nu Dang and His Kite’ and ‘The Paper Flower Tree’. Open 10am–6pm Tuesday to Sunday (Closed Monday)

… And there’s still time to catch Banners for Spain
– Fighting the Spanish Civil War in London
at Islington Museum The Spanish Civil War (1936-39) was sparked by a military coup led by General Franco against Spain’s elected government. In Britain, the ‘Aid Spain’ movement started to raise funds for food and medical supplies and to help refugees. This exhibition, in partnership with the Marx Memorial Library, showcases six visually stunning campaign banners for ‘Aid Spain’. Monday–Saturday 10am-5pm (Closed Wednesday)



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Day 22: SLAMbassadors Showcase

Thursday 22 June:  7-9pm @ Free Word Centre To celebrate the culmination of their spoken word youth workshops in Islington, The Poetry Society present a talent-packed evening of new work by SLAMbassadors hosted by the irrepressible SLAM legend – Joelle Taylor – who will also perform a headline set.  

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Day 21: Word Association…National Writing Day

Wednesday 21 June: National Writing Day aims to inspire people across the UK to discover the pleasure and power of writing. Today, First Story invite you to enjoy  a whole programme of activities and events focused on writing. Poems, stories, letters, raps, songs, scripts and more – we want schools, libraries, writing groups and communities across the country to experience the pleasure of writing creatively. Discover your story and make your voice heard this National Writing Day.

Royal Society of Literature presents Why Writing Matters 7pm @ British Library: Marking the first ever National Writing Day, children’s novelist, poet and performer Michael Rosen speaks about the power of writing, especially the need for creativity in the school curriculum. To open the event, London school pupils will read some of the work they have produced during the day. [Sold out]

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Week 4: Free Word of the Week

19-25  June 2017: Broaden your lexical horizons during the festival by spotting Free Words of the Week around the borough – or join in by putting them on display where you work! There will be a new word for every week of the festival tying into its wellbeing themes. Go to to find out more and to sign up for weekly posters.

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Week 4: Word Associations… Refugee Week

19-25 June 2o17: Refugee Week – Different Pasts Shared Futures 

Refugee Week is celebrated in the UK each year to coincide with World Refugee Day on 20 June.  It is a unique opportunity to celebrate the positive contributions that refugees and asylum seekers make to the UK and to promote understanding about why people seek sanctuary. In the UK, Refugee Week is a nationwide programme of arts, cultural and educational events that celebrate the contribution of refugees to the UK, and encourages a better understanding between communities. This year the theme is Different Pasts Shared Future.

Islington refugee and migrant communities bring to the borough a wealth of culture and Refugee Week events help highlight this whilst emphasising refugee issues, and delivering positive educational messages that counter fear, ignorance and negative stereotypes of refugees, through arts, cultural and educational events.

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Day 18: Cally Festival : )

Sunday 18 June 12-6pm: Story Street @ Cally Festival 

Story Street is part of the Cally Festival, a huge one-day street party on the Caledonian Road.

Presented by Word Festival’s very own poet-in-residence Paul Lyalls, Story Street will see storytelling, poetry, rap, spoken word and readings with performances from local people and well-known poets and storytellers – including Thornhill Primary School, Key Changes, Rhymes with Oranges, Joshua Siegal and more. Come and pull up a hay bale and enjoy the show!

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